Attending mass in China

The Catholic Chuch in China is 'underground'. The true Catholic Church is being persecuted, how does one meet their Sunday obligation when touring a country that is being persecuted ???

The "Catholic Church" that is available there is alligned to the state and is not answerable to the Vatican.

[quote="wcknight, post:1, topic:181926"]
The Catholic Chuch in China is 'underground'. The true Catholic Church is being persecuted, how does one meet their Sunday obligation when touring a country that is being persecuted ???

The "Catholic Church" that is available there is alligned to the state and is not answerable to the Vatican.

[/quote]

The Vatican has specifically requested that tourists NOT seek out underground churches in China, as it may put lives at risk. One is relieved from their Sunday obligation if there is no realistic way that they can fulfill it. It would most likely NOT be a sin to miss Sunday Mass in China.

That said, there may be a couple of options. First, you might be able to attend a Mass at the Vatican City embassy. They are offered in a few embassies, but space would be limited, and it wouldn't be common. Secondly, I'm not sure if the Vatican allows people to fulfill their Sunday obligation at the Chinese state churches. They may have some sort of psuedo-status, and it might be an option. Someone would have to look into this further.

I may be wrong, but I do not believe the Vatican City has an embassy with the People's Republic of China. Of course, many other countries, like Mexico and Italy, certainly do.

However, several (many? I don't know) of the bishops of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association have been approved by the Papacy and serve with the Pope's blessing. I do not believe that it is wise or necessary to forgo receiving communion in China, for reasons I will try to explain.

Let me make this one thing perfectly clear: the Chinese Catholics themselves, including the priests and probably most or all bishops are very devoted to the Holy See. They have suffered a great deal for their faith, don't sell them short! I know that the Vatican has not written them off. It is even likely that many of these priests are privately supporting the underground church, and members of the underground church will, on occasion, attend the approved legal church as a practical matter without compunction.

The Chinese Catholic church is in need of help, it needs assistance publishing Bibles (the Union Bible, a Protestant version sells well in most bookstores), it needs help with it's infrastructure and physical plant. Seminarians and nuns have come to countries like the United Sates, and received training in American dioceses. This has been a big help to them, I am sure.

The actual problem is a legal one. Non-citizens may not pastor Chinese citizens, otherwise the Chinese Catholic church is faithful to the Magisterium of the Catholic church. In the special regions of Hong Kong and Macau ("one nation - two systems") there is no problem there whatsoever, although in fact it is the same country.

The Chinese people today are very Christian-friendly and respectful, although they are as secular as Europe, as far as that goes. :shrug:

The Mass is certainly valid, and they could use the coin and encouragement from Catholics around the world. I encourage any travelers to China to look up the local parishes of the legal church and attend.

[quote="wcknight, post:1, topic:181926"]
The "Catholic Church" that is available there is alligned to the state and is not answerable to the Vatican.

[/quote]

Like it or not, it is the Catholic church, and it is in China.

The legal -political problems are not of their own making, they are caught in the middle and suffer for this. The "curly quotes" are not necessary.

I may be wrong, but I do not believe the Vatican City has an embassy with the People's Republic of China. Of course, many other countries, like Mexico and Italy, certainly do.

However, several (how many? I don't know) of the bishops of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association have been approved by the Papacy and serve with the Pope's blessing. I do not believe that it is wise or necessary to forgo receiving communion in China, for reasons I will try to explain.

Let me make this one thing perfectly clear: the Chinese Catholics themselves, including the priests and probably most or all bishops are very devoted to the Holy See. They and their families have suffered a great deal for their faith, don't sell them short! I know that the Vatican has not written them off. It is even likely that many of these priests are privately supporting the underground church, and members of the underground church will, on occasion, attend the approved legal church as a practical matter without compunction.

The Chinese Catholic church is in need of help, it needs assistance publishing Bibles (the Union Bible, a Protestant version sells well, and many Chinese have a copy, the Gideons pass out a free one), The CC needs help with it's infrastructure and physical plant. It could use your support. Seminarians and nuns have come to countries like the United Sates, and received training in American dioceses. This has been a big help to them, I am sure.

The actual problem is a legal one. Non-citizens may not pastor Chinese citizens, otherwise the Chinese Catholic church is faithful to the Magisterium of the Catholic church. In the special regions of Hong Kong and Macau ("one nation - two systems") there is no problem there whatsoever, although in fact it is the same country.

The Chinese people today are very Christian-friendly and respectful, although they are as secular as Europe, as far as that goes. :shrug:

The Mass is certainly valid, and they could use the coin and encouragement from Catholics around the world. I encourage any travelers to China to look up the local parishes of the legal church and attend.

[quote="wcknight, post:1, topic:181926"]
The "Catholic Church" that is available there is alligned to the state and is not answerable to the Vatican.

[/quote]

Like it or not, it is the Catholic church, and it is in China.

The legal -political problems are not of their own making, they are caught in the middle and suffer for this. The "curly quotes" are not necessary.

The work of Christ, of the Great Commission, goes on.

Just a question from a bystander who isn't familiar with the situation:

As I understand it (just from what I've read) the ordinations of priests in the legal Catholic Church in China are valid and therefore the sacraments and the Mass are valid. Is this correct?

[quote="mwscott, post:5, topic:181926"]
As I understand it (just from what I've read) the ordinations of priests in the legal Catholic Church in China are valid and therefore the sacraments and the Mass are valid. Is this correct?

[/quote]

That is correct.

The situation is analogous to the SSPX, except that they did not seek this themselves, it was imposed upon them.

I don’t think you have it quite right. The “Catholic Church” in China is NOT sanctioned by Rome and therefore not recognized as legitimate. The priests and bishops there pledge obedience to the state and therefore are not sanctioned by the Vatican. The TRUE Catholic Church in China is the underground Church and they practice in secret at great personal risk.

The Cardinal Kung foundation would point you in the right direction. I think supporting the bogus church in China would be doing the REAL Church a great dis-service and tend to lend legitimacy to a renegade organization.

** The Catholic Church in China, therefore, has two faces: the government-established Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association (CCPA) and the Roman Catholic Church (RCC) that became illegal and was forced underground.**
http://cardinalkungfoundation.org/images/bullet-2.gif CCPA – The Chinese Government officially recognizes only those pastors who openly declared their independence from the Holy See and joined the autonomous CCPA. The CCPA takes its orders only from the State Council’s Religious Affairs Bureau, which is an agency under the United Front Department of the Communist Party. It does not recognize the supreme administrative, legislative, and judicial authority of the Pope, even though it does recognize the Pope as “the spiritual leader” of the Catholic Church. The CCPA, for example, has appointed and ordained its own bishops mostly without the permission of the Pope, especially in the early days. It does not take its mandate from the Pope. It does not recognize the Pope as the leader of the universal Roman Catholic Church. It declared its autonomy from the Pope. Therefore, it does not recognize that the Pope has authority over the Catholic Church in China. Apparently referring to the CCPA, Pope Benedict XVI said: “the proposal for a Church that is independent of the Holy See in the religious sphere is incompatible with Catholic doctrine. The claim of some entities . . . to place themselves above the bishops and to guide the life of the Church does not correspond to Catholic doctrine. . .” In his speech on December 3, 1996, the late Pope John Paul II, apparently referred to the CCPA as "a Church which does not respond to either the will of the Lord Jesus, or to the Catholic faith."
http://cardinalkungfoundation.org/images/bullet-2.gif**[size=4] RCC – A Roman Catholic must accept **[/size]

RCC – A Roman Catholic must accept the supreme authority of the Pope as the leader of the universal Roman Catholic Church, no matter how unfavorable the circumstances are. A Roman Catholic cannot accept just any other Church (like the CCPA) as a substitute without abandoning his faith and status as a Roman Catholic. A Roman Catholic in China therefore cannot join the Patriotic Association.


**Copied from **


cardinalkungfoundation.org/index2.html

Yeah, you’re right, the Vatican wouldn’t have an embassy in the People’s Republic of China because the Vatican doesn’t have full diplomatic relations with China, and China won’t even consider it unless if the Vatican cut off its relations with Taiwan.

As for going to Mass there, in some places the government chomps down on the real Catholic Church and in other places it doesn’t. I did some studying on this, and because China is so vast, they don’t treat this issue with uniformity and you can do it freely in some places.

Would going to an Orthodox Divine Liturgy fulfill the Sunday Obligation if you can’t find a Catholic parish? Actually that might be irrelevant anyway, because Orthodoxy is banned in China just as Catholicism technically is (“technically” because, again, it’s not even enforced in some places).

If it is physically or morally impossible for a Catholic to attend a Catholic liturgy, there is no obligation to do so.

It could be a very good and beneficial thing to attend an Orthodox Divine Liturgy where no Catholic one is available, but there is no obligation.

wow 6 weeks away from mass and the sacraments is unfanthomable. I suppose I can still go into the renegade churches and pray…

This situation seems like a nightmare. I’m going to Expo in Shanghai later this summer. I’m not at all interested in being hauled off to jail for practicing my religion, but so be it. What happens, happens. So I presume I’ll go to Mass at what sure looks like a Catholic Church (there’s a nice, old, cathedral there, St. Ignatius, been rebuilt) and if I’m asked I presume I’ll have to say what my religion is. Why would I not say so? What kind of example am I giving by attending? or by staying away? Are we non-natives supposed to stay home, rather than fraternize with the CCPA?

Is reconcilliation valid? Is any sacrament valid?

If I sound a little pugnacious, I apologize, but this is ruffling my feathers, that’s all.

Is there a Big Dummies Guide to Catholicism in China?

Ken

i think you’re dispensed when in China
the Vatican actually recommends not to seek out the underground Churches as this could bring harm to those who are part of it. being a foreigner, you may not be as careful as the locals in keeping the secret and might unwillingly expose them to authorities, bringing them to more harm

either go to mass in the State churches without partaking in the Sacraments, or set an hour of prayer in your hotel. God knows your situation, He is not inflexible

I predictin the next 15 years the Catholic Church in America will be underground

Young, newly ordained, RC Chinese priests are here in Ireland collecting money for the construction of their new parish church. Obviously their embassy & their gov. know about their activities but seem to be unconcerned.

So the situation must be a lot more tolerant/flexible than a decade ago.

In a way, I’d say the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association is a lot like the Church of England in its early years, especially during the reign of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I - In both cases, basically, the goverment has attempted to sever the Church’s ties to Rome and establish a government sanctioned “Church” in its place, under the supervision/control of the state in the stead of the Vatican.

yes, i believe the CCPA is more of a church in schism, like the Anglican Church, than being an outright Protestant church. China doesn’t really have anything against Catholicism, they are against their Citizens submitting themselves to an authority other than the state. since the Vatican is a valid country and the Bishops of the Catholic Church would submit to the Vatican, its something China doesn’t like. they want the Bishops to submit to the state, not to the Pope who is also a Head of State

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